Tourmaline jewellery

Tourmaline jewellery

Tourmaline is a boron silicate mineral which comes in a variety of colours due to the trace elements found within, and is the birthstone for October.

The most common colour of tourmaline is green, followed by pink, yellow, blue, black and brown. Tourmaline is also found in bi and tri colours, the most common is ‘watermelon’ tourmaline consisting of a green outer colour and fading to a pink hue in the centre.

The most expensive and highly prized colour is the Paraiba tourmaline

The most expensive and highly prized colour is the Paraiba tourmaline. Found in 1980 in Paraiba, Brazil, this vivid green/blue gemstone exhibits depth of colour like no other gemstone.

Other tourmaline colours

Other forms of tourmaline are found all over the worLd. Afghanistan, Pakistan, Russia, Burma (Myanmar), Sri Lanka (Ceylon), and the United States are all suppliers to the jewellery market, as well as some African countries like Madagascar.

It is well suited for all jewellery from rings, pendants and earrings due to it’s hardness of 7-7.5 on the Moh’s hardness scale, and is a great alternative to gemstones like peridot and varying colours of sapphire.

These tourmaline pieces were custom designed and handmade in collaboration with our lovely clients.

Fancy a piece of tourmaline jewellery for yourself? Call us today to schedule an appointment 03 9650 3830 or email for an available appointment info@abrecht.com.au

A beautiful Paraiba tourmaline, recently shown to our client. This colour is not found in any other natural gemstone.

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It is so important to have your jewellery checked at least once a year to ensure it is safe. The metal jewellery is made of wears down over time and should be checked so stones are not lost or become loose. We encourage all our clients to visit us at least yearly to have their rings and jewellery checked and cleaned.

This is a recent before and after image of a clients ring. The claws had worn down so much she was at risk of loosing her stones. Luckily she brought it in for her annual clean and check.

If you receive our newsletter we encourage you to take advantage of our clean and polish service. Not only for piece of mind, but to ensure your heirloom jewellery lasts for years to come.

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Parti sapphires

These items were made for clientele of ours, each one displaying different and unique colours and patterns.

Parti (partition) sapphire or otherwise known as bi coloured sapphire, is a unique gemstone to Australia and consists of two colours within the one gemstone – yellow and blue.

Sapphires showcasing these individual colours (of yellow and blue) are the most highly prized while other parti sapphires can display green colours.

Unique to Australia these stones are graded just like other gemstones

Unique to Australia, these stones are graded just like all other gemstones. Carat (size), cut and clarity are important but the patterns of colour set it apart from others.

A Parti sapphire is still made of the same constituents as regular sapphire (corundum – Al203) but it is trace elements present in the growing process which gives the difference in colour. The yellow from iron the blue colour from a mix of titanium and iron.

Although most of the sapphire mining in Australia has been exhausted, gemstones are still available and on the market.

The only sapphire that can’t be synthesized

Sapphires have been synthetically made using machinery with specific temperature and minerals for years, but due to the patchy colour pattern of Parti sapphires, they cannot be synthesized in a lab. This not only makes them unique, as each one has its own distinct pattern, but a guarantee each stone will be natural.

Create you own individual part sapphire piece today. Make an appointment 03 9650 3830 or email us for further details info@abrecht.com.au

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Mass produced engagement rings are more common than you think!

The vast majority of engagement rings for sale through ‘main street’ jewellers are the result of mass production techniques. An initial model of a design will be created, then all subsequent rings (in their thousands) will be produced using casting methods – gold poured in a mould. These are far from the custom engagement ring designs that many couples would prefer.

What can you do to avoid purchasing a mass produced ring?

If you wish to have direct input into the designing process, it’s better to consult with an experienced and skilled custom jewellery designer / maker.

One of the first questions you will be asked to consider is the colour of the gemstone – the hero of the piece.

Diamonds are often the first preference, but other coloured gemstones are valid – sapphires come in all shapes and a variety of colours – the traditional blue, green, pink or golden (the red variety is called ruby). Aquamarine is also a popular choice – the sky blue, transparency and brightness appeal to many.

Do I have to choose a diamond for my ring?

As opposed to diamond, other gemstones introduce colour and size to help the design be truly unique – to stand out from the crowd. Smaller diamonds, sometimes of different shapes, are introduced to compliment, accentuate and lift the central coloured gemstone. A skilled designer can help you create a ‘one-off’ coloured stone engagement ring that reflects your personality and sense of style.

Another consideration when planning to use a coloured gemstone is the gemmological properties of the particular variety. Because engagement rings are generally worn on a daily basis, durability is a key factor. Diamonds are the hardest of all (with a hardness of 10), sapphire (and ruby) rate next (both alone on 9), while aquamarine (and emerald) have a rating of 7-8. The softer the coloured gemstone, the more likely for it to be damaged or suffer from worn facets over time.

Opal engagement rings are less common – having a hardness rating of 5.5-6.5, they are more prone to damage. There is no doubting that this unique, fiery coloured gemstone can be made into beautiful and unique designs, but they are better suited to dress rings, worn less frequently than an engagement ring.

How will I know if my stone is genuine?

A skilled designer / jeweller should also be qualified as a gemmologist and will bring this knowledge into play when assisting with a design that protects the coloured gemstone. The limitless variety of colours and shapes of sapphires, aquamarines and other coloured gems provide a wonderful opportunity to design a handmade engagement ring, one to treasure forever.

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Akoya pearl necklace and earrings

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What is a pearl?

Pearl is classified as an organic gemstone – created by animals or plants to produce materials that have been used in jewellery for centuries.

Pearls unlike gemstones that can be mined and faceted come from varying species of oysters. Five main saltwater and freshwater oyster species are used to produce pearls we see today.

There are three main types of pearls:

Akoya pearls

This type of pearl originated in Japan and has been cultivated since the 1920’s and predominantly occur in a uniform round shape.

Sizes of Akoya pearls are generally smaller in comparison to other pearl types ranging in sizes up to 8mm.

Historically it took 3-4 years to cultivate Akoya pearls but with advances in technology a mere 6 months is now involved to produce one.

Japan’s technique to produce these pearls was a well kept secret and dominated the market for the first 50 years but currently is in a state of decline as pollution of Japanese waters have affected the environment.

China has since taken over production of most Akoya pearls due to protected waters providing pristine conditions for pearl growth.

South Sea pearls

South sea pearls come in four main varieties. Gold, white, Keshi and Tahitian or black pearls.

Pearls of these types are farmed from a number of places in the world.

Tahitian (or black) pearls are found in French Polynesia, producing 90-95% of the worlds’ black pearls. The colour varies from a dark grey to vibrant peacock hues.

White South Sea pearls are farmed in Australia (currently the worlds’ largest producer) but are also produced in Indonesia and the Philippines. These countries also produce South Sea pearls of a golden colour.

South Sea pearls generally take 2 years to develop, this longer development period gives the nacre (the mother of pearl coating) a better depth of colour. Sizes of South Sea pearls are generally larger than Akoya and Freshwater pearls and can be found in sizes up 20mm.

An additional by product of the pearl industry is the Keshi pearl. These free form shaped pearls develop as a result of the oyster rejecting the pearl graft (the bead placed inside the oyster for the pearl to develop) and continuing to produce the nacre causing a free form shape.

Freshwater pearls

Freshwater pearls are produced in China using the same techniques as Akoya pearls and come in a large range of sizes and exotic shapes and colours. Some freshwater pearls are also dyed to imitate the colours obtained by South Sea pearls.

Cultivation or growing times vary depending on the size of the pearl, varying from 6 months to 5 years. Technology is advancing and sizes of freshwater have grown in size over the years. Originally sizes of 3-9mm were only obtainable but the industry has started to see sizes of 15mm and up.

 

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